The PSOE Proposes that Town Halls Buy Homes to Rent Them Out

21 February 2019 – Eje Prime

The PSOE wants to create a public stock of rental homes, with reference prices, which will end up affecting market prices. To this end, in its framework program for the municipal elections to be held on 26 May, the party led by Pedro Sánchez is proposing that Town Halls purchase (already built) homes for rental, although without considering those that come from evictions executed by the banks.

The text reflects the “absolute priority” of creating a public rental stock that is “sufficiently large” with which to develop active policies that facilitate access to housing for citizens and which “affect the prices in the rental market”, according to reports from Europa Press (…).

In terms of public subsidies for the rental sector, the socialists propose taking into account the different life needs of each cohort, such as young people who want to buy their first home and older people who are looking for family consolidation projects. Similarly, they foresee the creation of a stock of rental homes for young people (…).

Original story: Eje Prime 

Translation: Carmel Drake

Bankia To Start Financing Property Developers Again as EC Restrictions End

2 January 2018 – Inmodiario

From 1 January 2018, Bankia will be able to launch new lines of activity after the restrictions, established by the Restructuring Plan that the entity signed with the European Commission five years ago, were lifted. These activities will represent the levers for commercial development in the new growth phase that the entity is now embarking on.

José Ignacio Goirigolzarri, President of Bankia, has confirmed that “we are starting a new phase of growth after leaving behind a successful restructuring phase that we have now completed”. And he added that “the lifting of the restrictions imposed by the Restructuring Plan opens up new business opportunities for us and places us alongside our competitors once again”.

Over the last five years, and as a result of the commitments taken on to enable it to sign the Restructuring Plan (which allowed it to receive aid), Bankia was not allowed to operate in certain activities, such as financing real estate developments or companies with access to capital markets.

With the new objectives in mind, the entity has incorporated a Property Development Division into its new organisation, which was approved recently. It has appointed Alberto Manrique to lead that business and he will report directly to the Business Banking Division, led by Gonzalo Alcubilla.

Manrique joined the group in 1988. Since then, the industrial engineer, who holds a degree in ‘ETS de Ingenieros’ from ICAI, has taken on several positions of responsibility. Most recently, he has carried out different tasks within the Business Banking sphere, such as the corporate management of the business branch network in the centre of Spain, the management of the Structured Finance and Syndicated Loan product teams and taking responsibility for the online business channels.

The new management team will be responsible for developing financing for property developers at a point when the cycle is recovering, “with growth expected for at least three or four years, during which time we expect that around 150,000 new homes per year will be built”, says Manrique.

One of the other new lines of activity that Bankia will develop from 1 January 2018 onwards will be to grant long-term financing to large corporations with access to capital markets, inside and outside of Spain, as well as to finance projects and acquisitions, activities that have been limited in recent years.

In addition to these new lines of activity for the coming year, the growth phase that Bankia is now starting will be marked by its ability to take advantage of the enormous growth opportunities that result from the increase in the client base that the entity has experienced in recent years and as a result of the process to integrate BMN, which consolidates the resulting entity’s position as the fourth-largest bank by assets in Spain.

Original story: Inmodiario 

Translation: Carmel Drake

New Housing Plan Will Include Aid For Renters & Evicted Families

14 December 2016 – El Mundo

On Tuesday 13 December, the Minister for Development, Íñigo de la Serna (pictured above), said that the future Housing Plan 2018-2021, which his department is currently working on, will seek to continue to support rental housing through a specific program of aid, and will add other assistance for families evicted from their habitual residences.

De la Serna emphasised that the draft plan includes financing for a program of aid for families evicted from their habitual residences that find themselves in vulnerable situations, through the constitution of social funds for rental housing.

Similarly, he expressed his intention for the new housing plan to continue to offer support for rental housing thanks to a specific program.

The Ministry of Development has already started the process to approve this new housing plan and to this end, it has invited the Autonomous Regions to a conference, which will be held on Thursday 15 December, where some of the overarching premises are expected to be discussed.

The Minister for Development recalled that last Friday, the Council of Ministers approved an extension of the Housing Plan 2013-2016 to ensure that its beneficiaries will not lose their aid from 1 January 2017 onwards.

In terms of the sale of social housing to vulture funds, De la Serna reminded the Podemos party Senator María Pilar Garrido that the Government will not carry out any sale in this sense because the duties in terms of housing are assumed by the Autonomous Regions.

“We have to comply with the law and not encroach on the regional duties that are not our responsibility”, he added.

He also said that the State can only influence the regulation of economic planning, specifically, the definition of safeguarding actions and the regulation of financing structures through the contribution of state resources.

Based on this, he explained that the Government approves the state housing plans, which are then managed through agreements with the different autonomous regions.

Original story: El Mundo

Translation: Carmel Drake

Sareb Puts 1,100 Homes Up For Rent In 20 Provinces

13 December 2016 – Público

On Monday, Sareb put around 1,100 homes up for rent, located in approximately twenty Spanish provinces. Most of the properties are new builds, but there are also some second-hand homes in the portfolio.

“The company is aware of the increasing demand in the rental market from different groups, such as young people, and it is trying to contribute to the growth in the availability rate of homes, through initiatives such as this one”, said Sareb in a statement.

The company has said that it intends to boost the rental of homes with the aim of avoiding their deterioration, covering their costs and facilitating their sale in the future, in order to fulfil its divestment mandate.

The assets are located in the provinces of: Alicante, Almería, Badajoz, Barcelona, Castellón, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Girona, Guadalajara, Huelva, Lleida, Madrid, Málaga, Murcia, Pontevedra, Sevilla, Tarragona, Toledo, Valencia and Zaragoza.

Sareb, which was constituted at the end of 2012 in return for aid amounting to €41,300 million granted by Europe to the Spanish government to rescue the banking sector, has played a key role in the clean-up of the Spanish financial sector, by allowing those banks that received public help to transfer assets amounting to around €50,000 million to the vehicle.

Original story: Público

Translation: Carmel Drake

Madrid Accounts For 70% Of All New Housing Permits

10 October 2016 – Inmodiario

The Community of Madrid has been boasting to property developers that it represents the real driver of the growth currently being seen in the real estate sector in Spain.

In this way, at the opening of the National Real Estate Conference, the Director of Transport, Housing and Infrastructure, Pedro Rollán, commented on the statistics and highlighted that licences for new residential construction projects in the region increased by 66% during the first five months of 2016, well above the national average increase of 27%.

During his presentation at the conference, organised by the Association of Property Developers and Construction Companies in Spain (APCE), under the title “From recovery to innovation”, Rollán commented that real estate is a strategic sector, whose contribution to GDP is essential for economic growth.

And, to this end, he stated that the sector’s reactivation is necessary to consolidate and strengthen the (overall) recovery. He emphasised the importance of the need to continue working and adapting the (RE) sector to new times, and of innovating to achieve the most accessible, comfortable and least contaminated spaces.

In this sense, the regional Government is managing aid, which will serve to encourage the renovation of homes and the regeneration and refurbishment of urban spaces, thanks to the agreement signed with the Ministry of Development under the framework of the State Housing Plan.

Thus, this year, €14.4 million will be allocated to subsidies for building renovations and €29.8 million will be spent on aid for urban regeneration and renovation.

In the same way, the regional Government is working to create a Single Integrated Assessment Report Register for buildings in the Community of Madrid, which will contain all of the assessment reports relating to more than 40,000 buildings per year.

This register will enable the data obtained to be used to identify weaknesses and deficiencies in the building stock and will help to improve their quality and sustainability, as well as to obtain extensive information to allow policies to be directed appropriately in terms of architecture and housing. All types of buildings may be registered, regardless of their purpose (use) along with the mandatory registration of all buildings that are more than 30 years old.

Moreover, assessments of the degree of conservation of buildings (ITE) are going to be unified into a single document to ensure the safety of all of the buildings in the region; their basic conditions in terms of universal access, to encourage reasonable modifications in this regard; and energy efficiency certifications (CEE) to help achieve the commitment made in terms of energy savings and building sustainability.

Original story: Inmodiario

Translation: Carmel Drake